A preliminary study of nest structure and composition of the weaver ant Polyrhachis (Cyrtomyrma) delecta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

Tranter, C and Hughes, W O H (2015) A preliminary study of nest structure and composition of the weaver ant Polyrhachis (Cyrtomyrma) delecta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of Natural History, 50 (19-20). pp. 1197-1207. ISSN 0022-2933

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

Polyrhachis weaver ants build their nests from vegetation bound together using silk produced by their larvae. Here we provide a pilot study of the composition and the physical structure of three arboreal silk nests of Polyrhachis (Cyrtomyrma) delecta based on examination of three colonies. We found broadly similar nest architecture and size of the nests with each containing six or seven identifiable chambers, and describe the distribution of ants of different castes and life stages between them. We also note the construction of silk ‘girder’ structures, which spanned larger chambers, and we hypothesize that these provide additional strength to the internal nest structure. This study highlights the importance of more detailed investigation of the internal nest structure and composition in Polyrhachis, and other weaver ant species, which will help to develop our understanding of this specialized form of nest construction and nesting habits in a diverse group of ants.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Nest architecture, colony structure, silk girder, social insect, silk
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Evolution, Behaviour and Environment
Depositing User: William Hughes
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2016 08:19
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2016 15:12
URI: http://srodev.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/60001
📧 Request an update